The Commonwealth and Victorian governments have established an aged care response centre to assist with the growing crisis in the sector, which has been severely hit by the second wave of COVID-19.
Victoria recorded a further five deaths on Saturday, bringing the national total to 145.
The latest deaths involved four women in their 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s, and a man in his 80s.
There are now over 500 infections in aged care facilities across the state, evenly split between health workers and residents.
The new Victorian aged care response centre will assist with workforce provisions, the prevention of outbreaks and support for providers.
“That is a very important step forward in helping to coordinate, helping to ensure rapid response where these cases are occurring,” federal Health Minister Greg Hunt told reporters on July 25.
Staff shortages are a problem in Victoria as workers are required to self-isolate while awaiting test results, and only allowed to work at one site.
Senior federal Labor frontbencher Katy Gallagher said the impact of the COVID-19 on aged care homes has highlighted the fragility of insecure work in the sector.
Victoria recorded a further 375 virus cases on Saturday, which Hunt described as “stable but significant numbers”.
NSW recorded 15 new cases on Saturday. Eight were associated with the Thai Rock restaurant cluster in Sydney and six were returned travellers in hotel quarantine.
Colin Brinsden in Canberra